PORT ST. LUCIE, Fla. — Edgar Albert likes to keep things neat.
Before he hopped on his mower Monday in Port St. Lucie, he took out the trash, but says there’s no guarantee his garbage will get picked up on its service day.
“Sometimes it will go the whole week, to the next week until they come pick it up,” said Albert.
His neighbors north of Becker Road are noticing the same thing.
“Didn’t pick up last week and it’s pretty stinky. You open the can up and you’re like ‘wow!’”, laughed Joe Scovill.
Complaints to the city have been piling up - 1,900 filed in the month of June, totaling over 7,000 for the year.
Carmen Capezzuto, the Neighborhood Services Director for Port St. Lucie, says Waste Pro, the city’s contracted trash hauler, has had a tough time keeping employees, and keeping up with the city’s growth.
“We are doing our best to work with them and ask our residents to be patient while they wait for garbage service,” said Capezzuto.
The city pays Waste Pro $22 million annually.
The average homeowner is charged about $282 for trash pickup each year.
In a recent letter to the city, Waste Pro’s Chief Operating Officer says a lack of drivers is driving the problem.
Help wanted signs are clearly visible at the company’s St. Lucie County facility.
Trash will be one of the topics at Monday’s city council meeting and how Waste Pro plans to address the current situation.
Right now, the city has a contract with Waste Pro through 2025.